Friday, May 7, 2010

Quick word on the British elections

Having indulged in the deluge of trite that are the interviews, swingometers, celebrities and platitudes that accompany the farce that is the British elections until well after midnight and again this morning, I thought a couple of words might be lost on the events of yesterday and the haggling of today.

There was, of course, no real alternatives being offered by the major parties and there will be none even after the wheeling and dealing of the next couple of days leads to either Labour or Conservative getting the support that gives them the "magical" figure of 326 MPs, which will allow them to govern. No, there will be no unilateral withdrawal from Afghanistan, there will be no kicking out the robbing banking barons and ushering in real economic and social change change and there will be no turning away from the criminal relationship with the United States. There will no real change, will there?

Well, interestingly, with Nick Clegg and the Liberal Party having decided to talk to the Conservatives, as the party with the most votes and most seats, first, it could, indeed, be that it will be the Tories that will be forced to usher in the one possibly real change to come out of this election and we might be saying goodbye to that "first past the post electoral system" that not only makes the United Kingdom a farce of a democracy in terms of content, but also with respect to the mechanics involved in its so-called "democratic process". Yes, strange it will be if the very party which has been so against this change, were forced to implement it, and if implementing it is the price that the mediocre Machiavellianist that is David Cameron has to pay to get to number 10, then implemented it will be. First of their "prinicipals" down and we haven't really got started!

However, while this change to the electorla sysitem will ensure the removal of an absurdity that sees the Labour Party with 258 seats and 29.1% of the vote and the Liberal Party with only 57 seats after taking 23% of the vote, we should not think that this, as necessary as it is, is going to usher in real change. No, real change will happen when people are actually offered and vote for a real democratic alternative and after another stint "celebrating" that great British "democracy", there is more than enough evidence to suggest that that is not going to happen and that the British people are going to wake up to more surveillance, the Afghanistan war, other foreign adventures, cutbacks in public services, less and less democratic freedoms, more hanging on to "Uncle Sam's" coattails  and another bout of cultivating the illusion that this "proud warrior race", this "cradle of democracy", has some sort of special civilising role to play in world affairs.

Mighty Blighty will continue to do what it has always done and help to disseminate the unacceptable face of capitalism at the end of a bayonet, civilities will be superficially observed on the domestic stage, while social cuts proceed apace, and today the platitudes of Cameron, the programmed polemic of Brown and the triteness of Clegg, no matter how they are packaged, represent the face of that very strange "democracy" that has been with us for some time, namely, the face of "totalitarian democracy" and the sad thing really is that no "serious" politician in any of the three major parties would, or indeed, could, ever campaign on a  platform of real social change, real radical reform of the fiscal system and a withdrawal from Afghanistan and other foreign adventures.

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